Live updates

Off-shore windfarm debate rumbles on

A planning hearing into the controversial Navitus Bay windfarm got underway today - giving people the chance to have their say on what could become Europe's largest offshore facility.

Energy giants Eneco and EDF want to build it off the Dorset and Isle of Wight coastlines. Either a hundred and twenty - or a hundred and ninety turbines - would be put up across an area of sea half the size of the Isle of Wight, powering 700,000 homes. It has has support from green energy campaigners but opponents claim it'll ruin the local tourist economy - and the view.

Interviewees:

Chris Lisher is the harbour master at Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight, one of three ports which could become the base for Navitus Bay's onshore support facilities.

Mick Pearce runs a guest house right on the seafront looking out towards the turbines.

Hearing on Navitus Bay gets underway

Hearing on the proposed Navitus Bay windfarm gets underway Credit: ITV Meridian

Opposing sides in the debate over the proposed Navitus Bay windfarm are having their say to the government's Planning Inspectorate today.

An open-floor hearing at the Bournemouth International Centre is the first stage in the formal decision-making process.

The plan to build a huge windfarm off the Dorset and Isle of Wight coasts has support from green energy campaigners but is furiously opposed by many residents and some authorities on the south coast.

Advertisement

Off-shore windfarm debate rumbles on

Love them - or loathe them - they're our best known wind turbines. The one at Reading, just off the M4, and the one near Lewes, in Sussex, are just the start.

But it's not so much the onshore ones that are creating controversy right now - it's more the big farms planned off shore.

For more than two years now, people have been picking sides in the furious debate over Navitus Bay which, if it existed now, would be the world's largest offshore wind farm.

Energy giants Eneco and EDF want to build it off the Dorset and Isle of Wight coastlines, where the seabed is part of the Crown Estate.

Either a hundred and twenty - or a hundred and ninety turbines would be put up across an area of sea larger than the Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch conurbation.

Tomorrow sees the start of the planning hearings which - over the coming weeks - will influence whether or not the windfarm will be built. In the first of two reports Martin Dowse explores the arguments for and against.

Have your say on Navitus Bay wind farm plans

A drop in session is being held later in Bournemouth regarding plans for a wind farm in between Dorset and the Isle of Wight.

Navitus Bay would see nearly 200 turbines in the English Channel Credit: ITV Meridian

Navitus Bay would see nearly two hundred turbines, up to two hundred metres high in the English Channel.

Hundreds turned out to the last drop in session over Navitus Bay plans Credit: ITV Meridian

The public has until June the twenty third to register their comments with the Planning Inspectorate - which is on hand today to show how to do that.

Meeting to discuss windfarm plans

A meeting to discuss plans for a wind farm off the Dorset coast could be one of the largest ever. Organised by Bournemouth Council.

It's thought more than one thousand people will attend on Saturday to hear from both supporters and critics of the Navitus Bay proposal. If it went ahead it would see more than one hundred and ninety turbines in the Solent.

Advertisement

Final public consultation on wind park

Developers are today offering the public a chance to submit their views on wind park proposals across the south.

The public will have a chance to talk to the Navitus Bay project team about proposals at a series of exhibitions across eight locations in Dorset, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

The consultation which run until 11th October and is a culmination of more than three years of environmental work.

The documents will set out the potential impacts of the project and the proposed measures to minimise these effects during the construction and operation.

Almost 2,000 people attended our last round of consultation events and we are hoping that many more will come to the September exhibitions to let us know what they think about our findings and assessments. All the responses we receive will be analysed independently and will help inform the preparation of the Environmental Statement which forms part of the official planning application."

– Mike Unsworth, Project director of Navitus Bay